If you’ve been following my Instagram gallery, you might know that I just got back from a blissful two-week holiday in my hometown Sardinia, which, to brag just a little, happens to be my hometown. This has obviously led me to write extensively about it, with a soft spot for the lesser known places, customs and traditions.
Last time I went, just last August, I brought with me my new Sardinia Marco Polo Guidebook to see what it recommended to visit apart from the usual Costa Smeralda (Emerald Coast).
I come from Oristano province, possibly the least-known of all provinces, so I naturally started delving into the section covering my area and I was pleased to see mentioned godforsaken places such as Abbasanta, Santu Lussurgiu and Sedilo. Godforsaken, yet by all means interesting and worth a visit: among its treasures, Abbasanta counts an important nuraghe, Nuraghe Losa, Bronze-Age stone buildings that dot the island and that Marco Polo Guidebook defines as “mystic relicts of the Stone Age Nuragic civilization”, around which historians are still researching; beautiful Santu Lussurgiu, apart from a beautiful landscape, a quaint little town and natural water springs, has in its territory a small and important Templar church; and Sedilo, traditional town in the heart of Sardinia is a must especially on July 6th when there is the festival devoted to Saint Constantine, a reckless horse race reproducing the battle of the emperor against Maxentius.
Among the areas that I, myself, know less is the north of the island, where I will likely follow some of the guidebook’s pieces of advice next time I go home and visit places such as Alghero, beautiful Stintino, the abandoned silver mines of Argentiera, the national park of the Asinara island, former Alcatraz-like prison and now home to the sweet white donkeys and an unspoilt nature, and of course the city of Sassari to explore the churches, museums and streets of this former trading hub.
The book gives some pretty good suggestions on what to see and do, but I admit, as a local, I appreciate the sections devoted to our own culture and traditions, such as the importance we give to guests, “a population that holds hospitality sacred”, something similar to what I’ve only seen in Asia and the Middle East, or when it highlights the huge diversity within the island, aspect that not all travelers manage to perceive, “each village has its own costume, cuisine and festivals”, rightly pointing out what I’ve always stressed: “the further you move away from the coast, the more the real Sardinia emerges”, a “small continent in the Mediterranean”.
Anyone traveling to this Italian island will have a great starting point to explore my hometown Sardinia with this guidebook from Marco Polo Travel Publishing, not only to enjoy its “beaches that compare well to those in the Caribbean” but will also have a good guidance to dig deeper in the local folklore and lifestyle, useful tools on what to expect from the people and certainly precious tips on how to fully enjoy a holiday there.
This post was sponsored by Marco Polo Travel Publishing, but obviously all views are my own. For more travel news, you can follow their social media network on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.